Since its inception in 1976, El Sistema, Venezuela’s phenomenal youth orchestra program, has brought social transformation to several million disadvantaged children in that country. In addition to producing world-class musicians like conductor Gustavo Dudamel, El Sistema is now a rapidly expanding global movement, changing countless young lives worldwide.
How will El Sistema work here in the USA?
Our film is an in-depth, verité-based look at three kids – two in West Philadelphia and one in New York City’s Harlem – as they participate in a pair of Sistema-inspired youth orchestra programs. We watch as our kids struggle to master their instruments, confronting their fears along the way and interacting with their talented, dedicated teachers. We witness the children evolving before our eyes.
Born with a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight, Elizabeth “Lizzie” Velasquez was first bullied as a child in school for looking different and, later online, as a teenager when she discovered a youtube video labeling her “the world’s ugliest woman.” The film chronicles unheard stories and details of Lizzie’s physical and emotional journey up to her multi-million viewed TEDx talk, and follows her pursuit from a motivational speaker to capitol hill as she lobbies for the first federal anti-bullying bill.
Living under the Himalayan sun, their eyes have slowly gone milky white. Manisara and Durga have cataracts, and their mountain home in Nepal has become a warren of darkness. Shot over three days, Open Your Eyes follows their extraordinary journey down the mountain for a chance to see again.
These Storied Streets explores the issue of homelessness across the country. The journey starts in LA and ends in New York covering 13 cities across the country. The film will shatter the stereotypes most of us have about the homeless population.
The current educational system in the United States was developed a century ago during the rise of the industrial age and was once the envy of the world. However, the world economy has since transformed profoundly, but the US education system has not. Schools are attempting to teach and test skills, when mastered, that still leave graduates woefully unprepared for the 21st Century. After presenting this problem, the documentary focuses on the story of a school in San Diego that is completely rethinking what the experience of going to school looks like.
A group of passionate and adventurous young people leave their known worlds behind to spend 100 days in the jungles of Borneo. Their mission is to confront one of the great global challenges of our time, saving rain forests and giving hope to endangered orangutans. Their task is enormous and the odds are against them.
Tech jobs are growing three times faster than our colleges are producing computer science graduates. By 2020, there will be one million unfilled software engineering jobs in the USA. Through compelling interviews, artistic animation and clever flashpoints in popular culture, CODE documentary examines the reasons why more girls and people of color are not seeking opportunities in computer science and explores how cultural mindsets, stereotypes, educational hurdles and sexism all play roles in this national crisis. Expert voices from the worlds of tech, psychology, science, and education are intercut with inspiring stories of women who are engaged in the fight to challenge complacency in the tech industry and have their voices heard. CODE aims to inspire change in mindsets, in the educational system, in startup culture and in the way women see themselves in the field of coding.
This bold new feature documentary takes us deep into a world that China’s government will do anything to cover up. Our filmmakers traveled to the most conflicted areas of China, Tibet, Nepal and India in an attempt to uncover what’s really happening in those regions. Due to a media ban that threatened every major news agency in the world, the filmmakers had to make their way into Tibet disguised as carpet salesmen. Bringing with them several powerful, yet tiny hand-held cameras to remain innocuous to the Chinese officials, they were able to pass through security and gain access to some of the most sensitive regions of Tibet.
How to Change the World chronicles the adventures of an eclectic group of young pioneers – Canadian hippie journalists, photographers, musicians, scientists, and American draft dodgers – who set out to stop Richard Nixon’s atomic bomb tests in Amchitka, Alaska, and end up creating the worldwide green movement.
The “Maker Movement”, sometimes called the “Third Industrial Revolution,” subverts traditional manufacturing by building on innovative concepts such as open source, local manufacturing, crowd funding, and digital fabrication. Breaking the hobbyist movement stereotype, “Maker” delves deep into this ecosystem of design and manufacturing in the Internet era. The film explores the ideas, tools, and personalities that are driving the Maker Movement – and returns with a timely snapshot of one of the transforming influences of the current age.